Are your screentime stats through the roof? Same. By now, you’ve probably heard of the dangers of blue light — AKA the light we expose ourselves to when we use gadgets and Insta-scroll at night.
While blue light can definitely throw your body clock out of whack, it has also led to the rise of products like anti-blue light glasses, anti-blue light screen protectors, and the latest trend: anti-blue light skincare.
But how bad is blue light, exactly? Are skincare-specific products actually necessary or is it another gimmicky fad? Let’s talk about it.
First, what is blue light?
Blue light is radiant energy that the eyes can see. You mostly get it from the sun, but it is also emitted at lower levels from lightbulbs and gadgets (like the phone or laptop you’re reading this on).
Also known as high energy visible (HEV) light, it’s a lot like ultraviolet light’s cousin, as they’re similar in wavelength and intensity. Blue light has less energy than UV, which is known to cause skin cancer, cataracts, and other health issues. However, it can reportedly penetrate deeper into the eye than UV and potentially damage your retina cells.
But don’t sound the alarm just yet. Not all blue light is bad, and you need some of it to boost alertness and cognitive function too. At present, more research is needed to know how much blue light is too much, but doctors are already concerned about the possible long-term effects of excessive exposure on people’s eyesight.
How does blue light affect skin?
The good news is that blue light hasn’t been found to cause sunburn or skin cancer like UV can. In fact, some derms use blue light therapy to treat skin conditions such as acne, atopic dermatitis, psoriasis, and other skin conditions. Controlled use of it can even promote faster wound healing and is used in treating superficial skin cancers.
So you might be wondering, what’s the deal with anti-blue light skincare then? While it might not have a serious impact on your skin, other studies have found that blue light may still lead to free radical damage and stimulate pigment production, AKA dark spots.
It’s kind of a mixed bag, and it largely depends on a person’s own lifestyle. How much time do you spend outdoors? How sunny is it? Again, blue light exposure from the sun is much more impactful than what screens emit — 1000 times more, to be exact. In a YouTube video, dermatologist Dr. Dray explained that “worrying about the blue light from your computer screen is like wearing a life jacket to drink a glass of water: You’re not going to drown.”
The verdict: blue light isn’t all BS!
Further research needs to be done to rule out blue light’s effects on aging and skin disease completely. So the bottomline is, it can’t hurt to protect your skin, but you probably don’t need blue light-specific products for that. Does sunscreen protect against blue light? Yes, it does!
Your best bet is using an everyday sunscreen and barrier-strengthening products to fight all kinds of damage. Our Resting Beach Face SPF30 Sunscreen Serum is designed to filter both UVA/UVB rays, and it also comes with green tea antioxidants and KOPARA extract to strengthen cells against free radicals, blue light, and other external aggressors. Prevention is always, always better than the cure!
For more skincare tips, check out our Everyday Humans blog.